Yahoo chief Marissa Mayer surprises business world by ending her company's option to work from home

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  • Schwa South Jordan, UT
    March 2, 2013 1:25 a.m.

    I think the danger comes with labeling telecommuting one way or the other for everyone. Every job is different, every situation is different, and every employee is different. I work from home one day a week. As a single guy, it is typically my most productive day of the week. The amount of distractions for me in the office are numerous. That being said, some positions require office time, and some employees don't have a proper home environment for telecommuting.

  • JWB Kaysville, UT
    Feb. 28, 2013 9:04 a.m.

    CEOs and their board and stock holders of individual companies make determination on their business plan for their particular environment. In the IT world of Yahoo it is not the same plan as for Adobe, Intel, HP and other types of companies that deal with IT. They have a particular market and objectives to accomplish.

    I am sure this was not a shot from the hip and was a thought out plan with the board and members in agreement with the President, CEO, CFO, etc.

    Telecommuting is not for every business and everyone. There are terms in the agreement that the employer and employees make in that process. There is also a trust factor that employees that telecommute can show by their input and output that those objectives are being met and validated by the success of the program in an individual corporation, company or even governmental entities that allow it.

    Proponents can show benefits for the environment, family, world as a whole and just having a Friday every workday. It is not beneficial for all work environments to have individuals away from a place where you can bounce ideas off of each other. Adobe has made their operation open.

  • pmccombs Orem, UT
    Feb. 28, 2013 8:45 a.m.

    What message is sent when a company that specializes in Internet communications decides that its own people, connected as they are through the Internet, aren't as productive as they would be if they were gathered together in an office environment?

    It's nothing short of an indictment of their own product, if you ask me. It's a no-confidence vote in technology that is supposed to keep people connected but apparently is doing it badly.

    If Yahoo! is right about this, they probably shouldn't be in the business of providing tools for group collaboration and so forth.

  • Chase Saint George, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 11:51 p.m.

    Different work arrangements work for different businesses/industries.

    Bringing her kid to work is NOT "Do as I say, not as I do." She is not working from home . . . or did you miss that part?

    That she has luxuries that other employees don't have . . . IS THIS NEWS TO ANYONE?

    Look, she was brought in to bring this underperforming company up a few levels and build value for the share holders. HER neck is on the line. Some OTHER CEO allowed employees to work remotely. She's doing things differently. If she feels remote working is underperforming, is it not her prerogative as CEO to make a change as she feels necessary?

    The pervasive "entitlement mentality" is getting old. Don't like the new CEO's policies? Go somewhere else. This is America folks. You have the choice to stay or the choice to go. You don't have any rights.

  • Aggielove Cache county, USA
    Feb. 27, 2013 4:50 p.m.

    Satellite workers kill business.

  • Mukkake Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 3:04 p.m.

    Cinci Man:
    [no cooler conversations, no ball games to discuss, no personal stories, no long lunches and breaks, no hanging around after meetings, and no cubicle drop-ins]

    What industry do you work in? In the Technology/Innovation companies I've worked at, those are often essential interactions. In fact, offices are structured in such a way to help facilitate those "impromptu" collaborations.

    [A telecommuting employee can join a phone/web/video conference, email thread, or chat thread just as easily and efficiently as an employee in a remote office.]

    But they can't join a person-to-person conversation, and so are left out.

    I think people take for granted that just because they do most of their "work" with a computer and that Yahoo does most of it "work" with a computer, that it is essentially the same kind of work. All white collar jobs require a computer these days, but that doesn't mean that the work is the really the same or similar across industries/sectors. Working in a non-innovation industry, impromptu conversations are less essential, but working in an innovation industry, they are essential.

  • silo Sandy, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 1:53 p.m.

    A quick look at Yahoo's career page shows that they have open positions spanning about 30 different locations. Unless Mayer intends to consolidate all those remote offices back into the sunnyvale headquarters, her argument about efficiency only through direct collaboration is null. A telecommuting employee can join a phone/web/video conference, email thread, or chat thread just as easily and efficiently as an employee in a remote office.

    She obviously thinks this idea is a good one, and she should be able to present the board and shareholders with something more than an opinion to support her claim. The board and shareholders should expect nothing less from her.

  • Levin Hightstown, NJ
    Feb. 27, 2013 1:12 p.m.

    Seeing as how Yahoo's competitors are far ahead in facilitating collaboration and data sharing outside of a standard office, this seems like a desparate move to turn public opinion against the "office without walls".

  • Cinci Man FT MITCHELL, KY
    Feb. 27, 2013 10:15 a.m.

    I loved your comment. Thanks! It all comes down to good management. Fortunetely, I've had great managers that know how to manage remote resources. And my wife keeps the "honey could you" things down to very few until after my closed door opens at the end of the day. I never take lunch and I never use Netflix during work. But I suppose some could watch the soaps and Oprah (is she still on?). But as long as they get their work done, I'm ok with that.

  • Florwood American Fork, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 10:02 a.m.

    Cinci Man makes some good points about effectively managing work from home, but I think there are pluses and minuses to both approaches. Water cooler conversations at the office (wait--you actually have water coolers at work?), "Honey could you" at home; the annoying cubicle visitor at work, your four year old using markers on the wall at home; long lunch break at work, Netflix at home.

    In my job, face to face interactions with the other teams help get things done. I'd prefer more flexibility in my workplace attendance, but would not want to give it up completely.

  • Cinci Man FT MITCHELL, KY
    Feb. 27, 2013 9:08 a.m.

    I think you'll find in the statement by the CEO that they are not effeectively managing the work-from-home staff. So instead of training the managers and putting into place effective ways to monitor the accomplishments of the staff, they cancel the policy. It seems to me that the problems with Yahoo go deeper than the staff. Management needs to quit loafing and manage, monitor, train, and develop good work-from-home management tools and practices.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 8:37 a.m.

    It depends...I think you could list a million anecdotes where individuals and teams were much more productive when they spent most of their time at home instead of the office, and I think you could find a million more where it just made everything harder and enabled unproductive workers to goof off.

    It takes a certain kind of worker and a certain kind of job to make telecommuting a valuable practice for the employer while giving employees greater freedom and flexibility. Discipline is the most important attribute and not all people have it.

  • Cinci Man FT MITCHELL, KY
    Feb. 27, 2013 8:29 a.m.

    And another benefit I forgot to mention - there are no affairs (known) between employees or with managers who work from home. I was sickened when I worked for another company with so many affairs going on, sometimes at the local motel or behind locked doors at the office.

  • Cinci Man FT MITCHELL, KY
    Feb. 27, 2013 8:07 a.m.

    I have been working for a great company that has nearly all of its employees working from home for years. Everyone I work with knows that you get far more work done when there are no cooler conversations, no ball games to discuss, no personal stories, no long lunches and breaks, no hanging around after meetings, and no cubicle drop-ins. We are all shaking our heads at this crazy notion. In fact, we all find that we work during the time that we would have otherwise been commuting, this getting more hours of work from us than we would if we were in the office.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 8:05 a.m.

    In an IT environment that necessitates team collaboration in order to progress, this is a great move.

  • UT Brit London, England
    Feb. 27, 2013 7:35 a.m.

    It should be noted that the Yahoo CEO has recently had a child and works in the office. It should also be noted that she has had a nursery built next to her office and has a team of attendants to look after the child. "Do as I say, not as I do".

  • My2Cents Taylorsville, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 3:45 a.m.

    Smart move and I think corporate American has been waiting for someone to break the ice to get employees back in the house. The pitfalls and negative aspects of work at home jobs should have been apparent and foreseen but they had no data or case arguments to not allow it. I think this move will help the economy and families and marriages to give parenting a needed break in tedious and boring jobs of a home jail cell.

    Corporations have a valid argument with the collaboration and team concept is something most business cannot compete with in large scale complicated operations. When multimillion dollar collaboration can make or break a business, you need the immediate input and team work to resolve a solution with immediate access to all infromation of workers.

    I think parents will welcome the change but may cost some their jobs who felt they had a gravy train position. Low efficency corporations is who gets into trouble and stress.